Spring Over to These Season-Friendly Exhibits Before They’re Sprung

04/13/2012 10:40 AM |

Critical Edge, by Tamara Gonzales. Photo courtesy Norte Maar Gallery.
  • Critical Edge, by Tamara Gonzales. Photo courtesy Norte Maar Gallery.

Spring has been in the air for weeks already, but only of late has it seemed to hit its proper trot as the light greens of newborn leaves pop about, fresh blossoms open wide, and pistils and stamens all over creation get frisky with one another at a distance, disseminating procreative output of all floral varieties into the air and deep into our nasal passages, stimulating allergic reactions far and wide and sending sufferers to seek solace in pharmaceuticals.

Alas, the sticky stench of plant sex. Spring’s beauty is perhaps bountiful, but it’s also wont to foment a fair amount of otolaryngological, or at least olfactory, misery.

On a different note, however—or on a similarly seasonal note without the pollen-related anguish—there are a couple exhibits on view in Bushwick right now that seem perfectly poised for springtime climes. In chromatic terms at least, let’s say. And since they’re both up for several more weeks now, you still have time to take in their auras and airs.

One of these exhibits is Tamara Gonzales’ solo show at Norte Maar Gallery, Untitled, An Exhibition of New Paintings. Gonzales’ work is of an initially brow-furrowing sort; it takes time to make sense of the ostensibly delicate, gossamer-like surfaces of her canvases. But they soon become seizing, then unmistakeable thereafter. Indeed, her lushly layered, lace-filtered paintings are so visually affecting and chromatically effective that you might well find yourself liking color combinations you’d never liked before, then loving them. Sprawling high and low on the gallery’s walls and featuring a site-specific work as well—one in which whole armies of recently hatched chicks, if I may, might find thorough camouflage—Gonzales’ show is spatially transformative, too, not least in the bright hours of mid-afternoon when the gallery’s front room is awash in golden rays. In the project room, and a bit less springlike than spectral, Kevin Curran’s installation of thematically linked sculptures and drawings linger like mysteries in a realm of somehow not-quite-icy white. Bridging the colors of one artist, then, and the spectrality of the other—by merging the varied chromatics of the former with the softened angularity of the latter—is an exquisite new polyptych sketchbook by Austin Thomas.

Kevin Curran, installation view. Photo courtesy Norte Maar Gallery.
  • Kevin Curran, installation view. Photo courtesy Norte Maar Gallery.

Another splendiferously seasonal show you should see is in the 56 Bogart building, at Studio 10. The three-artist exhibition there now, Out Side, reads like some sort of sun-soaked structure that has exploded and fortuitously landed, half-suspended, in a placatingly free-form state of grace. Lisa Sigal’s sculptures incorporating screens and other, less porous objects are staidly stoic alongside Elana Herzog’s happenstantial, one might say, wooden concatenations, each of which appears both structurally sound and teetering, precarious, collapse-bound, as if a mere kicked-up breeze might re-pitch their order. Surrounding all these sculptures, then—and intermittently visible through almost every single one in their resonant vibrancy—are Michele Araujo’s color-splashed, subtractive paintings, capturing sieve-like so many otherwise escapist rays of light. This exhibit beams and breathes, then beams some more—especially if you catch it in latter-postmeridian or early evening hours, when brassy western light fully floods the space. Perhaps then you’ll get a proper glimpse of the aforementioned post-explosion state of grace.

Now that, in fact, sounds like the season’s air-spewed plant sex again.

I think I’ll head outside to stroll around and inhale some.

Works by Herzog, Sigal and Araujo. Layout view.
  • Works by Herzog, Sigal and Araujo. Layout view.

Paintings by Michele Araujo.
  • Paintings by Michele Araujo.

Tamara Gonzales’ solo show at Norte Maar, Untitled: An Exhibition of New Paintings, remains on view through April 29th.

Out Side: Michele Arauho, Elana Herzog, Lisa Sigal, at Studio 10, remains on view through April 22nd.

You can follow Paul D’Agostino on Twitter (but really, why bother?) @postuccio